PORT LOUIS (Reuters) - China’s Zhang Jilong has joined the powerful FIFA executive committee, replacing Sri Lankan Vernon Manilal Fernando who is serving an eight-year ban for unethical behaviour.
Zhang headed the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) for nearly two years on an interim basis after FIFA dismissed former AFC boss Mohammed Bin Hammam for bribery and corruption in 2011.
AFC President Shaikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain attended his first FIFA executive committee meeting in Mauritius on Tuesday.
Fernando joined the executive committee in 2011 but was provisionally banned in March while the investigating arm of the ethics committee probed alleged misuse of AFC funds.
After a two-day hearing of the same committee last month, the Sri Lankan administrator was banned for eight years after he was found guilty of several breaches of the FIFA code of ethics.
Reporting by Mike Collett in Port Louis, writing by Amlan Chakraborty; editing by Greg Stutchbury